NEW DELHI: The Supreme Court on Wednesday sent a 47-year-old man to the gallows for luring a 4-year-old girl with the promise of buying her chocolates, brutally assaulting her sexually and then murdering her by using two heavy stones to crush her skull when she was writhing in pain after the perverted act.
The convict was a neighbour of the victim who called him uncle like other children in the residential area under Wadi police station of Nagpur. He lured away the girl on April 3, 2008. The girl's battered and sexually assaulted body was discovered the next day by police at the instance of the accused after his arrest.
He was convicted based on 'last seen theory' corroborated by several independent witnesses. The trial court on February 23, 2012 awarded death penalty finding the crime falling within the parameters for 'rarest of the rare' category. It also found no mitigating circumstances in favour of the convict, an exercise mandated by the SC in Machhi Singh case.
Affirming the conviction and sentence last year, the Nagpur Bench of Bombay High Court said: "The accused raped a 4-year-old girl and thereafter battered and smashed her head by two heavy stones and killed her... Battering the head of the girl of tender age was done by the accused with extreme cruelty." The accused, Vasanta Sampat Dupare, appealed against the judgment in SC. Given the recent trend of extreme caution adopted by the apex court in awarding death penalty even in brutal murder cases, a 3-judge bench of Justices Dipak Misra, R F Nariman and U U Lalit made a fresh scrutiny of the evidence presented by the prosecution during the trial against Dupare, who was also a history-sheeter with four criminal cases pending against him. Writing the judgment for the bench, Justice Misra said: "This case deserves to fall in the category of rarest of rare cases. It is inconceivable from the perspective of society that a married man aged about two scores and seven make a four-year minor innocent girl child the prey of his lust and deliberately cause her death."
The bench said the child trusted the man because of his acquaintance with her family and the socially ingrained trust attached to such proximity with elders. "This (rape and murder) is not only betrayal of an individual trust but destruction and devastation of the social trust. It is perversity in its enormity. It irrefragably invites the extreme abhorrence and indignation of the collective," it said and upheld award of death penalty. The court said taking into account Dupare's age, his appalling cruelty towards the minor girl was 'extremely shocking'. "It was not committed under any mental stress or emotional disturbance and it is difficult to comprehend that he would not commit such acts and would be reformed and rehabilitated."
"The barbaric act of the appellant does not remotely show any concern for the precious life of a minor child who had not seen life. The criminality of the conduct of the appellant is not only depraved and debased, but can have a menacing effect on the society," it said. "As the circumstances would graphically depict, he would remain a menace to the society, for a defenseless child has become his prey. In our consideration, there are no mitigating circumstances," the court said.
Source: http://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/india/Man-gets-death-for-raping-killing-4-yr-old/articleshow/45290629.cms [last accessed 06.02.2015]